Gadkari also conducted the bhumi puja (ground- breaking) for the development of another 16 projects at a cost of Rs 7,585 crore.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy presided over this event conducted in virtual mode via a video conference from New Delhi and Vijayawada.
Union Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways General (retired) V K Singh, Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy, Union Secretary (MoRTH) A Giridhar, state minister for Roads and Buildings M Sankara Narayana, Principal Secretary M T Krishna Babu and others attended.
The projects inaugurated included the long-awaited 2.7-km Kanaka Durga flyover, a new jewel for Vijayawada city, built at a cost of Rs 501 crore, with the state governments contribution of Rs 146 crore.
An engineering marvel, it is only the third six-lane bridge in the country with a unique spine-and-wing design supported by a single pier.
Gadkari called it “the pride of the country.”
A four-lane road was also developed that would connect the National Highway-65 to NH-16 in Vijayawada.
The other flyover at Benz Circle on NH-16 is part of the expansion of the Vijayawada-Machilipatnam section of NH-65 into a four-lane road.
Incidentally, Gadkari laid the foundation stone for these flyovers in December 2015.
Both were delayed for many years due to various reasons but the Benz Circle flyover was completed early this year and the Kanaka Durga flyover last month.
Gadkari laid the foundation stone on Friday for a parallel three-lane flyover on NH-16, to be built at a cost of Rs 100 crore for a length of 2.47-km.
He also launched the development of a major six-lane bypass (17.88 km), including a major bridge on river Krishna, which would connect the NH-65 (at Gollapudi near Vijayawada) with NH-16 (at Chinakakani village near Guntur) at a cost of Rs 1,600 crore.
Another 30-km bypass being taken up will connect NH-16 (at Chinaavutapalli) with NH-65 (at Gollapudi) at a cost of Rs 1,225 crore.
These two projects would significantly reduce the traffic load on Vijayawada city, besides cutting the costs and easing the movement of transport vehicles on these crucial highways.